I feel very sad when I notice that my children are becoming avid consumers of everything made in China. I believe children should be curious about what is inside the devices we use, how the house appliances around us work, and think about the environment.
I am very excited about the Maker Movement. The more I look into it, the more I believe that it’s very important to our future. It has the potential to turn more and more people into makers instead of just consumers.
So what is the Maker Movement?
The maker movement is the umbrella term for independent inventors, designers and tinkerers. The creations stir the imagination of consumers that are often tired of generic, mass-produced products. The making is as much fun as the playing, and imagination, when triggered, can lead to more tinkering, and more inventions.
Last week, The US Embassy brought to Brasilia Glauco Paiva, a maker who loves democratizing maker kits, ideas and concepts. He started talking to a group of teachers from Casa Thomas Jefferson, Colégio Militar, and Centro de Ensino Ceilândia 26 at the IRC, and in no time turned the library into a dynamic learning space. We started by talking about pedagogy, hands on learning, and listening to Glauco tell us how easy it is to understand the concept of Zone of Proximal Development when you offer students an activity that involves making and learning at the same time.
As I walked into the room and looked at the groups working, I realized that teachers in Brazil might feel encouraged to use these kind of activities in schools to motivate students to create products instead of only consuming them. Moving people from being consumers only to creators is critical to our future.